Recovering From COVID Through Environmentally-Friendly Investment

The last two years have seen the South Australian economy take a significant hit. From the devastating bushfires that ravaged parts of the state and the continued impact of the global pandemic, to the highest unemployment levels in the country and the ever-present threat posed by the climate crisis, it’s clear that the time is right for a bold and innovative vision to drive job creation in this state. 
South Australia is in a prime position to create new jobs through green investment. 
Projects to help national parks deal with invasive species, repair our sensitive coastal areas, increase tree cover in our cities and suburbs, and support bushfire recovery will not only benefit our environment but create much-needed jobs at a time when we’re still feeling the impact of the pandemic.  

The SA Greens Conservation Jobs Plan would create almost 3000 new jobs while restoring our bushfire-ravaged landscapes and creating beautiful green cities and suburbs. 
These projects would be rolled-out across the state, with an immediate focus on Kangaroo Island, the Mount Lofty Ranges, and the Adelaide metropolitan area, and provide new training opportunities.  
These regions have been recognised as one of 15 National Biodiversity Hotspots, with only 13% of original vegetation remaining, and 22% of this vegetation being protected. (1) 


Bushcare Jobs

The summer of 2019/20 decimated ecosystems and communities across South Australia. Coupled with one of the highest rates of unemployment in the country, we are faced with a once in a generation economic crisis. Under the SA Greens BushCare Jobs plan more than 1500 new jobs will be created, helping to restore ecosystems and build green, healthy cities. 
This plan would see significant investment in conservation and land management across national parks and conservation parks to tackle long-term invasive flora and fauna threats. Our precious animals and plants are particularly at risk just after bushfires, as weeds move into sensitive areas quickly. 

What’s included:

The BushCare Jobs plan would create up to 1,590 jobs through a $265 million investment over a 10-year period. (2) 
This plan will build new amenities, tracks, and other infrastructure, such as fencing to keep livestock out of rivers, and remove rubbish from waterways. 
It will invest in training extra permanent and seasonal staff for our national parks and other conservation spaces, to allow them to do large-scale weeding and invasive species-management work. 
Jobs generated would prioritise young people – facing higher levels of unemployment – as well as regional workers, and areas still recovering from recent bushfires such as Kangaroo Island. 

Urban greening project

Re-greening our cities and suburbs is an essential task as we seek to tackle the impacts of both the climate crisis and unemployment in South Australia. Green cities and suburbs help to mitigate rising local temperatures, allow native wildlife to return, reduce energy costs for residents and businesses, and improve local amenity.
In recent years, there has been a 1%-5% loss of tree cover in the Adelaide region. (3)

Under the SA Greens Urban Greening Project a large-scale re-greening program will be rolled out across Adelaide and key regional centres, increasing tree cover in streets, parks, gardens, and along rivers. This would make our cities greener, cooler, and more enjoyable, generating jobs in planting and maintenance. 

What’s included:

A large-scale, state-wide tree-planting program, generating up to 900 jobs for the Adelaide metropolitan area, or 1,320 jobs across the state, through an investment of $265 million. (4)
This 10-year commitment, planting 2.5 million trees (250,000 trees a year), throughout Adelaide (prioritising areas with lower tree coverage, like the western suburbs), and regional centres, would have a significant impact on the liveability of our cities. 

  1. Delivering Economic Stimulus Through The Conservation And Land Management Sector, Ernst & Young, 2020.
  2. These figures are based on analysis of the similar Victorian Greens bush jobs plans. Our costings and job-creation figures use the Victorian data, but reduced to incorporate SA's smaller population size.
  3. What's Happening To Adelaide's Trees?, Conservation Council of SA, 2020.
  4. These figures are based on analysis of the similar Victorian Greens urban tree-planting plans. Our costings and job-creation figures use the Victorian data, but reduced to incorporate SA's smaller population size.